Strata Rules & Bylaws

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After three weeks of lugging a back pack through Nepal and India, I now truly understand how lucky we are to live in this part of the world. Don’t get me wrong! I would go back without a second thought and I loved the chaos and noise that one can only experience in the streets of Kathmandu or New Delhi.

Despite the seemingly chaotic, unorganized traffic in that region of the world, there were rules. They may not be the same rules we follow here while driving, but unwritten rules nonetheless. But while they worked for the streets of India, they certainly would not work on the streets of Sechelt or Gibsons. (And in 3 weeks of travel, I saw only one accident – my tuk tuk getting hit bya bicycle carrying a crate of chickens!  The only parties who seemed to be perturbed by the incident were the chickens.)

The bylaws of a strata corporation are much the same. What works for one strata may not work for another. Well written and easily understood bylaws are an essential part of the “rules of the road” for strata corporations and without them there could be chaos. As an owner of a strata lot, it is your duty to ensure that you understand and abide by the bylaws of your strata corporation just as you should abide by the rules of the road. Council members have a duty to uphold the bylaws of a strata corporation, so be gentle in your response to a fi ne for a bylaw infraction.  (By the way – ignorance is not an excuse!)

When was the last time that you read the bylaws of your strata corporation? Are they current and enforceable? Were old bylaws repealed before new ones were approved at a general meeting by a ¾ vote? Were they registered? Do your bylaws comply with the Strata Property Act, Regulations and Human Rights Code? If you don’t know the answers, consider budgeting for a bylaw review by a lawyer at your next AGM. The cost of having a well thought
out, clear set of bylaws is much cheaper than defending unenforceable bylaws in the court system.

Do you have a question about strata? Please feel free to email me at


Niina Mayhew, the strata manager for Holywell Properties, has close to twenty five years of experience in the real estate industry.

She recently moved to the Sunshine Coast from the Thompson Okanagan region to be closer to family. Before joining Holywell Properties, Niina was a senior property manager, leading a team of property managers and support staff and overseeing the operation of 60 strata corporations based in resort locations from Kamloops to the BC/Alberta border.

She is well versed in working with stratas, including sections, quarter and time shares, condo hotels, commercial and bare land strata corporations.

She is firm believer that communication is everything in working with strata councils and owners, and while she takes her job seriously, often finds humor in it as well.

Niina has acted in a consulting role with developers, from  small family oriented townhome complexes to sectioned air space strata corporations.

Her expertise can assist developers in understanding the requirements of the Strata Property Act, preparing budgets and disclosures as well as preparing for the first annual general meeting.

Niina can be reached via email at and via phone at 604 885 3460.